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The federal bank and thrift regulatory agencies have announced changes to the CRA regulations to support stabilization of communities affected by high foreclosure levels. The final rule encourages depository institutions to support eligible development activities, including loans, investments and services, in areas designated under the Neighborhood Stabilization Program administered by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.
The federal banking agencies have issued guidance on underwriting standards for lending conducted under the Small Business Lending Fund Program as administered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury. Pursuant to the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, the Treasury is authorized to purchase up to $30 billion in preferred stock and other financial instruments from eligible financial institutions to create the availability of credit for small businesses. Small institutions with assets of $10 billion or less may apply for the program and are encouraged to submit their applications to the Treasury by March 31, 2011.